May 6-20, 2019: Solomons, MD

From the Great Wicomico River, we went to Solomons, MD.  It was a “little bit of everything” kind of day; we started out with winds in the high teens/low 20s, lots of fetch, and short wave periods.  The wind was out of the north and right on the nose, so we pounded along with the staysail only.  The beating was splashing bilge water on the high water sensor, causing the high water alarm to go off and me to have several mini-heart attacks while I scrambled below, sure that I’d be waist-deep in water.  The best way to describe that half of the day was Super Not Fun.

We see a lot of lighthouses, and don’t get me wrong, each one is really neat. But my newest obsession with them is spotting the outhouse. Talk about hanging it over the edge!
I think this one is even scarier. I guess it gives you the motivation to get it done quickly!

Then as the day went on, the winds died and the water turned to glass.  The sun came out, and by the time we caught a mooring at Zahniser’s Marina, the morning’s unpleasantness was just a memory.  This day was 10 hours for 47.9 nm.

We ended up staying on our mooring at Zahniser’s for two weeks.  It’s a very comfortable and inexpensive place; for our $30 per night mooring, we got a short ride to the dinghy dock, spotless private shower suites, loaner bikes, thrice-daily shuttles to the grocery store, decent wifi even out in the mooring field, clean (and cheap!) laundry facilities, a mailing address, and the most helpful staff you’ll ever find. 

There are so many lovely old boats in Solomons. This 1928 oyster buyboat, Half Shell, has a very interesting history and current purpose.

We had a couple of equipment setbacks, one of which is fixed and one of which is not.  On our third day, a French couple dinghied over.  Between their broken English and our broken French, we learned that they saw an osprey perch on our windex, bending it 90 degrees and rendering it useless; they said an osprey had done the same thing to them three weeks earlier.  Looking at the windex through binoculars, it looks like it’s just bent and hopefully not broken.  The Captain will go up the mast to see if he can bend it back straight.  In the meantime, we’re using the electronic wind sensor on our Raymarine i70 to show us wind direction.

The other setback was our larger outboard.  We have two, a four-stroke 9.9 hp Yamaha and a two-stroke 3.5 hp Nissan.  We started bringing the small one (which we call Might Mo) because a lot of the time, we just need to putt the dinghy short distances, and Mighty Mo is more than capable.  Neither outboard has been run since the summer due to our long sojourn in Oriental, although the Captain serviced both during the hiatus.  We put the 9.9 on the dinghy, and it was quickly obvious that it wasn’t working properly; the Captain diagnosed a clogged carburetor.  We ended up renting a car to take it to JF Marine in Prince Frederick, MD.  While they worked their magic on it, Mighty Mo took care of us.

We saw Frisky each morning at the fuel dock as she returned from a morning’s haul of some sort of thing-in-a-shell.

We had a great time in Solomons, as always.  We got to eat greasy takeout Chinese food, got donuts at a local donut shop, and had amazing Thai food.  I discovered my favorite-but-impossible-to-find adult beverage, Buffalo Trace Bourbon Cream, in the liquor store.  We took dinghy rides, hung out at the library, and bicycled around Solomons Island.  Now it’s time to head back south a little ways so that we can go to Norfolk, VA, and wait for a weather window to head north offshore.